NSF New Account Management System Changes

Dear Colleagues:

Effective March 26, 2018, the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) registration processes for new organizations and new users will be updated when NSF launches a new account management system. A centralized and streamlined account registration process for the external research community will provide each new user with a single profile and unique identifier (i.e., NSF ID) for proposal and award activities. NSF is providing guidance to avoid confusion among stakeholders regarding multiple NSF IDs.

Here is what this means for NSF’s system-to-system partners:

Updated NSF Proposal Forms

  • Effective March 26, 2018, NSF will begin using an updated NSF Cover Page and an updated NSF Senior Key Person Profile (Expanded). These updated forms and schema can be found at: https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/forms/forms-status-report.html#sortby=0. All proposals submitted to NSF on or after March 26, 2018, must include the latest version of these two forms.

Note: Updates were made to the Senior Key Person Profile (Expanded) on February 5, 2018. Please make sure to use the latest version.

  • Due to system updates that will occur over the March 24-25 weekend, you must submit proposals using the current forms by 5:00 p.m. (local submitter’s time) on Friday, March 23. NSF will no longer accept the old forms after March 23. The new account management system will be launched on March 26 with the updated forms.

New NSF Registration Requirements for Individuals

  • Beginning on March 26, 2018, the PI, all Co-PIs, and the Authorized Organizational Representative (AOR) listed on a proposal must all be registered with NSF prior to proposal submission.
    • The AOR’s NSF ID must be provided on the NSF Cover Page. 
    • The NSF ID for the PI and all Co-PIs must be provided on the Senior Key Person Profile form. 
    • The proposal will be rejected if the NSF ID is not valid for every PI, Co-PI, and AOR listed on the proposal. 
    • If submitting a proposal as an unaffiliated individual, the name of the individual PI on the Senior Key Person Profile form must match what is in NSF’s system.
  • Users with existing NSF accounts can access the NSF ID Lookup page for their NSF ID. Forgotten passwords for established NSF accounts may be retrieved here. Individuals may not have more than one NSF ID per the Proposal & Award Policies & Procedures Guide (NSF 18-1) at Chapter I.G.4.
  • New users will be able to register directly with NSF through NSF’s Research.gov system on or after March 26 via this link: https://research.gov/accountmgmt/assets/welcomeregistration.html. Note that this link will not work until March 26.

New NSF Registration Requirements for Organizations

  • Beginning on March 26, 2018, all organizations must be registered with NSF prior to submitting proposals through S2S systems.
    • Before a new organization can register with NSF, it must first be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM; https://www.sam.gov) and have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number.
    • Organizations not already registered with NSF should be aware that completion of the SAM registration process could take up to two weeks.
    • Note that the vast majority of universities are already registered with NSF via FastLane.
  • When a proposal is submitted to NSF on or after March 26, 2018, the NSF system will cross-check the DUNS number and organization name with NSF records.
    • If there is no match to the DUNS number and/or organization name, the proposal will be rejected and the PI/AOR listed on the proposal submission will receive an email notifying that the proposal submission was not accepted by NSF.
    • Currently, the NSF system registers organizations and will allow proposal submission in cases where there is a mismatch of the DUNS number and/or organization name with NSF records; however, this will no longer be possible effective March 26, 2018.

We encourage you to update your onboarding processes for new organizations that will be submitting proposals to NSF on or after March 26, 2018. In addition, please alert existing organizations that all PIs, Co-PIs, and AORs must be registered with NSF before proposals can be submitted to NSF on or after March 26, 2018.

NSF is currently finalizing new account management training resources including Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), jobs aids, and instructional videos. These materials will soon be available on an “About Account Management” page accessible on the Research.gov homepage.

For IT system-related questions, please contact the NSF Help Desk at 1-800-381-1532 or rgov@nsf.gov. Policy-related questions should be directed to policy@nsf.gov.

NSF Division of Information Systems